Christian School Expels Student For Wearing Rainbow Shirt and Cake on Birthday
A 15-year-old girl was expelled from her Christian high school after administrators said a photo of her wearing a rainbow sweater next to a rainbow cake is a “lifestyle violation.”
“She was happy. She looked beautiful,” the teen’s mom, Kimberly Alford, told NBC affiliate WAVE of Louisville. “Of course, as a mom, I took her picture blowing out her candles, and I posted that on my Facebook page.”
But the celebration and smiles came to a halt when Alford received a letter from the head of Whitefield Academy, where her daughter, Kayla, was a freshman. The post was shared with staff at Kayla’s school, and apparently, it was the last straw for Whitefield Academy.
A few days later, Kimberly was contacted by Head of School, Dr. Bruce Jacobson.
“It was an email expelling Kayla from Whitefield immediately due to a post on social media,” Alford said. “I feel judged, she feels judged, just very devastating for us.”
The private school claims the picture is the latest in two years’ worth of “lifestyle violations.” In the email, Dr. Jacobson said the picture “demonstrates a posture of morality and cultural acceptance contrary to that of Whitefield Academy’s beliefs.”
Whitefield Academy, told NBC News the rainbow-filled photo was the last straw following two years of student code violations.
“Inaccurate media reports are circling stating that the student in question was expelled from our school solely for a social media post,” the statement said. “In the fall, we met with the student to give her a final chance to begin to adhere to our code of conduct. Unfortunately, she did not live up to the agreement, and therefore, has been expelled.”
Alford said Kayla had been on probation since October for “some behavioral issues,” including cutting class and being caught with an e-cigarette. She said school administrators, “in a roundabout way,” told her that the probation was not about her daughter’s “sexuality.”
Alford filed an appeal with the academy, arguing that her daughter should not be “held accountable for a cake that I purchased with no intention of promoting a posture of morality and cultural acceptance that contradicts that of Whitefield Academy.” But the school refused to meet with her.
However, administrators did agree to change Kayla’s expulsion to a voluntary withdrawal so it would no longer be on her record. Alford has enrolled her daughter in public school.
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